Memory of the Church

Share On


Reading of the Word of God

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

I am the good shepherd,
my sheep listen to my voice,
and they become
one flock and one fold.
.

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

Luke 11,14-23

He was driving out a devil and it was dumb; and it happened that when the devil had gone out the dumb man spoke, and the people were amazed. But some of them said, 'It is through Beelzebul, the prince of devils, that he drives devils out.' Others asked him, as a test, for a sign from heaven; but, knowing what they were thinking, he said to them, 'Any kingdom which is divided against itself is heading for ruin, and house collapses against house. So, too, with Satan: if he is divided against himself, how can his kingdom last?-since you claim that it is through Beelzebul that I drive devils out. Now if it is through Beelzebul that I drive devils out, through whom do your own sons drive them out? They shall be your judges, then. But if it is through the finger of God that I drive devils out, then the kingdom of God has indeed caught you unawares. So long as a strong man fully armed guards his own home, his goods are undisturbed; but when someone stronger than himself attacks and defeats him, the stronger man takes away all the weapons he relied on and shares out his spoil. 'Anyone who is not with me is against me; and anyone who does not gather in with me throws away.

 

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

I give you a new commandment,
that you love one another.

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

Speaking to Jeremiah, as reported in today's first reading, God says, "They did not listen to me, or pay attention, but they stiffened their necks." These words of the prophet foretell the difficulties Jesus himself will face because of his preaching. Jesus never stopped struggling against the evil that kept men and women enslaved. One day, Luke writes, Jesus was casting out a mute spirit who was making a man incapable of communicating with other people. The devil truly is - as the term literally means - the spirit of division, the one who separates people from each other. He is the prince of loneliness who continues to enslave people today, creating barriers between them. He is the one who inspires the inability to communicate between individuals, peoples, and nations. His constant presence explains the incredible frequency of tension and conflict in our society. The prince of evil never stops working to spread enmity everywhere. The disciples are invited to remain attentive and vigilant in order to keep from becoming accomplices of this hell that generates conflicts and wars. The accusations against Jesus become incredible. But evil does not give up. It is truly faceless, and it continues to operate even when evidence of its destructive work is revealed. The Lord is the only one who does good and spreads love. This is why Jesus is truly the stronger man, the one who can guard the house of which the Gospel speaks. And the house is the heart of each one of us, which is subject to temptation. But the Christian community itself can also be a house constantly threatened by the forces of evil. Only those who trust in the Lord, only those who faithfully listen to his word, can defeat the power of evil and gather the fruits of love and hope.